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Thread: Block - is it any good?

  1. #1
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    Block - is it any good?

    Comparing my armor, avoidance, cooldowns and health pool with our Death Knight tank, I can't help but notice I'm worse at each of those, maybe except health where I am equal but scaling slower. I'm not sure how def stance will cover the 5k of armor difference between us, lets assume it will be more or less the same, but still my slightly higher single target threat isn't enough to make up for lower avoidance and much worse cooldowns - the thing that is supposed to keep us competitive is probably block. While in TBC block was awesome tool to keep those ugly crushing blows off the combat table + some bonus mitigation, in WotlK it is mitigation alone, and not a very reliable one either. Warrior tank will have from 15% (not full shield spec, and br on gear mostly avoided) to 35% (other way round). The block value will be around 1200 - 1300, with glyph of blocking and all standard talents. Well, do you think that in currently available content block has any value whatsoever as mitigation? In my opinion it feels pretty weak and RNG dependant, having more health, more armor or more avoidance is just straight out better. Paladins have it slightly more reliable with block value being added to their EH calculation, but lets be honest, 1500 blocked out of a big melee hit isn't anything great.

    So, my question is, don't you feel warriors (and to lesser extent paladins) being balanced around block makes us somewhat disadvantaged compared to non blocking tanks on bossfights - OTing Patchwerk being probably the only example in current content of hard hitting melee boss. Do you look at block value as on mitigation, or just a threat stat alone, making those Shield Slams fatter? Do you consider block rating being the item budget well spent, or you pick up some real avoidance, or real mitigation over it at each possibility?

    Also, are you happy with block change, from reliable but not very significant mitigation in TBC (crushing blows we can ignore), to unreliable but sometimes quite decent mitigation, with periods of even better mitigation on request, like it is now?

  2. #2
    I like block. I always have. Even when tanks were stacking dodge in TBC i stuck with block. Felt like a safer constant than dodging. But, now shield block is on a 20/30 sec CD i dunno. I generally take it as it comes.

    Saw some figures that said block rating for trash and dodge rating for bosses was the way to go. Also saw some figures that stated that 2% block was as good as 1% dodge, but it really depends on what is hitting you and how hard :P

    The theory behind it was if a mob is only hitting for 1200 a block becomes avoidance and is therefore the same as a dodge..... but you gain rage and as block is easier to stack, less rating to % block, than dodge then it is considered better.

    Simple answer is carry 2 sets of gear. Trash set and boss set
    Last edited by Andronikus; 01-24-2009 at 03:09 PM. Reason: Speel1ngg :D

  3. #3
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    You have to remember 2 things.

    First, Avoidance is on the DR, which means as we get into higher gear levels, we will even out a bit more.

    2nd, we're only in the first tier of shields, which will help get our armor closer and our block MUCH higher.

    DK's are scaling much like druids did in beginning of BC, they are pulling ahead, but mostly due to equipment available.

    Remember by the time we hit sunwell, druids were all but useless and they had to put radiance in to keep warriors/palies from being OP.
    November 23, 2004 8:27:03 AM - Glomgore 10+ Years of tanking? Priceless

  4. #4
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    Block is really good. Whether it's good enough to close the gap, I don't know. I know I LOL a little inside when critical block procs on a Shield Block+trinket combo and I hear a meaty *thud* from a Naxx10 boss. I could've sworn I heard it on Patchwerk, but I don't have combat log verification.

    Oh, and block has no diminishing returns. Moar win.
    "I played hard to avoid mistakes, but now I can play hard to capitalize on opportunities." -Arold, on the 3.0 Protection Warrior.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hengist View Post
    but lets be honest, 1500 blocked out of a big melee hit isn't anything great.
    Remember though, if a boss hits you for 15k. And you block 1500 of it, that's 10% mitigation. Most tanks would need a lot of armor to gain another 10% damage reduction.

    Admittedly, block is a crappy hybrid of avoidance and mitigation. It's not always there like real mitigation, and it only partially helps against damage unlike avoidance (worst of both worlds!). But, it's easier to stack (better rating:% ratio) and it doesn't suffer from diminishing returns.

    Course you can't block all types of attacks (all those dragon breaths come to mind), but what you can block is an absolute value, meaning the higher your block value / lower the boss hit, the more benefit you'll get.

    Block isn't a must-have ability (it can't be otherwise Druid and DK tanks would be unplayable), but it has some nice uses and tends to be underrated when you're talking survivability. It's also a nice form of threat, which armor/avoidance aren't (ignoring the minimal gain from a tank gaining parry hasting).

  6. #6
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    Vs raidbosses I find my passive block to be absolutely worthless in most cases (except maybe loatheb). Shield Block is a great cooldown though and I can't fault it in any way, it is a good emergency button.

    My biggest problem with block is that they counter our block with parry on a DK and the avoidance is just flat out superior. Sure you can say it makes the damage spike more but when you watch someone take a string of 40 hits without any landing it starts to get kind of silly. Not to mention avoidance is the sort of thing that gets more powerful as it gets higher. Block is inversely related to avoidance assuming that it is capped on something like a paladin. As the Paladin's avoidance goes up, the blocking becomes less effective because you are taking less hits. Sure it still reduces the same % of overall damage but you eventually cross a line where the reduction is unnecessary because you aren't being hit enough to begin with.

    Passive Block will ultimately fail for the same reason that every warrior ability failed in the past. The base does not scale well, and it also does not scale with the opponent at all. Sure taking 1500 off a heroic mob around 40% or 50% of the time (Non avoided hits only) is alot but taking 1500 off a 15k hit really is an insignificant figure most of the time, especially when the healers can't expect it to happen regularly.

    Whats going to happen in the future too? Our block value scales at 2 str to 1 BV but how much strength are we going to gain compared to how much damage mobs are going to gain? They can't give us too much strength or our offensive would start to get too powerful but if we're only gaining 50-75 SBV per tier and the boss damage is going up by a few thousand it is going to get worse and worse.

  7. #7
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    What many people underestimate is what will happen once you'll get passive block cap on a warrior.
    Worlde - Prot Paladin
    Darkworldie - Tank DW Frost DK
    Uord - Prot Warrior
    Huordie - Feral / Resto Druid

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Worldie View Post
    What many people underestimate is what will happen once you'll get passive block cap on a warrior.
    It will be quite pwoerful, but we are not even close to get there, and huge magic damage makes gearing for br at cost of stamina a bad idea. Also dr on real avoidance will make the 102,4 magic numebr require a LOT of br on gear, do you think we will egt it for free or something? I suppsoe it will always be a chocie of piece with more stam, piece with more dodge and piece of more br, and br will lose always, like it does now.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Worldie View Post
    What many people underestimate is what will happen once you'll get passive block cap on a warrior.
    I rarely agree with Worldie, but I have to here. I cannot wait for this! (Well, I can wait since i'm not gemming pure +def)

    But really, block is amazing. It helps with AoE and Single target threat, rage generation, reduces incoming damage, and is really easy to stack due to lack of DRs. As was stated before, 1500 blocked of a 15k hit is still 10% mitigation, which is a huge amount. Think about it this way: Most bosses hit 6k-9k in 10 man, 9k-12k in 25. Taking 1200 off 12k is 10% reduction, taking 1200 off 6k is 20% reduction. So that's really a pretty damn good range of damage reduction.

    Also, to the OP, I am finding that I am keeping up with DKs pretty alright as far as Avoidance goes. I am in the low 50% range, while my best geared DK in guild is in the mid 50% range. It's not really that huge of a difference from what I've seen.

    It will be quite pwoerful, but we are not even close to get there, and huge magic damage makes gearing for br at cost of stamina a bad idea. Also dr on real avoidance will make the 102,4 magic numebr require a LOT of br on gear, do you think we will egt it for free or something? I suppsoe it will always be a chocie of piece with more stam, piece with more dodge and piece of more br, and br will lose always, like it does now.
    I'm at about 87% total miss+dodge+parry+block right now, and I stack a lot of stam. I can get into the mid 90% range without sacrificing too much hp, and i'm only halfway done with Naxx 25. I think you'll find that getting 102.4% wont be too much of a stretch when the next tier of gear comes around.
    Tanks: We like it rough.

  10. #10
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    Passive block cap will be reached if they keep adding block rating on gear. I myself am very close to it in dedicated gear with a marginal loss in HP/avoidance (2-3k HP, 6-7% less avoidance), and i'm at around 87% without holy shield, a Warrior would be at 92%.

    If block rating is just a filler stat like hit/expertise, it wont.
    But if it isnt...
    Worlde - Prot Paladin
    Darkworldie - Tank DW Frost DK
    Uord - Prot Warrior
    Huordie - Feral / Resto Druid

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Worldie View Post
    Passive block cap will be reached if they keep adding block rating on gear. I myself am very close to it in dedicated gear with a marginal loss in HP/avoidance (2-3k HP, 6-7% less avoidance), and i'm at around 87% without holy shield, a Warrior would be at 92%.
    Gonna sandbox me some br gear.
    But even with 92%, you'd be loosing too much tps stats as a warrior. Exp/hit scales so much better for warriors then paladins since all our attacks depend on it. Some paladins attack cannot be dodged/parried and some don't need hit (might be only 1 for each but still).

    With dps'ers getting close to 10k dps when they start using t8, you ain't gonna hold much aggro at all with stacking BR gear as a warrior (this is an assumption, ain't done no numbers on this).


    And to the OP and other responders

    You use Shieldblock 10sec of every 40sec, making all your blockrating useless for those 10sec, or 25% of the time.
    Blocking 10% of a hit is a 10% mitigation, but 25% of the time your blocking it without a single Br, so your total Br is only affective for 75% of the itemization it gives a paladin, where 1% block is actually 1% block and not 0.75%.

    Now lets say 15k hit, blocking 1500 on average.
    Your average 15/5/51 warrior has ~20% block (assuming going for exp/stam > Br)
    75% of those 20% = 15%
    100 hits = 1.500.000
    15 blocks = 22.500
    Your static Blockrating is therefor giving you
    1.500.000 / 22.500 = 1.5% mitigation

    There are some critical blocks I didn't take into account, but even if you push the number to 2%, it's still useless as a mitigation stat.


    And for a warrior being able to control when you block, instead of a pala (who hasn't reached the 104% magic number), gives you an edge and actually gives you more room to stack true avoidance/tps gear.

    True it does give better effect the lower the mob hits you, but coming Ulduar I'd rather be dodging those 15k hits then blocking them.


    ps. Just to iterate my point, since I'm sure some people will read through this too fast to get it.
    When you press "Shieldblock", you get 100% block, so no matter if you have 0% block or 92% block, you aren't using your ratings from your gear, hence useless while Shieldblock is up.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krashtork View Post
    I rarely agree with Worldie, but I have to here. I cannot wait for this! (Well, I can wait since i'm not gemming pure +def)

    But really, block is amazing. It helps with AoE and Single target threat, rage generation, reduces incoming damage, and is really easy to stack due to lack of DRs. As was stated before, 1500 blocked of a 15k hit is still 10% mitigation, which is a huge amount. Think about it this way: Most bosses hit 6k-9k in 10 man, 9k-12k in 25. Taking 1200 off 12k is 10% reduction, taking 1200 off 6k is 20% reduction. So that's really a pretty damn good range of damage reduction.
    Its good when it happens. Death Knights, Druids and Paladins don't have such a problem, their mitigation is 100% reliable.
    Quote Originally Posted by Krashtork View Post
    Also, to the OP, I am finding that I am keeping up with DKs pretty alright as far as Avoidance goes. I am in the low 50% range, while my best geared DK in guild is in the mid 50% range. It's not really that huge of a difference from what I've seen.
    I think you're ignoring Blade Barrier. Another 10% avoidance.
    Quote Originally Posted by Krashtork View Post
    I'm at about 87% total miss+dodge+parry+block right now, and I stack a lot of stam. I can get into the mid 90% range without sacrificing too much hp, and i'm only halfway done with Naxx 25. I think you'll find that getting 102.4% wont be too much of a stretch when the next tier of gear comes around.
    From what I see on armory, youre gearing rather heavily towards shield block - neck, wrist, hands and legs. If you're go with better items from 25 mans, you're only get lower, not higher. And again, if we pick up br pieces in next tier,a nd paladins and dks will go to plate with stamina and real avoidance, where it will put us?
    Quote Originally Posted by Worldie View Post
    Passive block cap will be reached if they keep adding block rating on gear. I myself am very close to it in dedicated gear with a marginal loss in HP/avoidance (2-3k HP, 6-7% less avoidance), and i'm at around 87% without holy shield, a Warrior would be at 92%.

    If block rating is just a filler stat like hit/expertise, it wont.
    But if it isnt...
    I wouldn't call that a marginal loss. Its nice to have gimmick block set for some encounters and soloing, lots of fun indeed, but if this gimmick is something both warrior and paladins are balanced around when dealing with real bosses, that kind that can kill you, we are at disadvantage. As far as I remember, reaching 102,4% total block and avoidance in TBC required some heavy sacrifices on stamina, and we didn't have dr on avoidance to deal with. Not mentioning solid losses in threat and dps.
    Quote Originally Posted by Garbid View Post
    And for a warrior being able to control when you block, instead of a pala (who hasn't reached the 104% magic number), gives you an edge and actually gives you more room to stack true avoidance/tps gear.

    True it does give better effect the lower the mob hits you, but coming Ulduar I'd rather be dodging those 15k hits then blocking them.
    That's my problem - I feel like our ability to block some damage takes out more of our "tank points" than it is worth. We have block, armor and avoidance, but as you calculated, only the last two really matter, but since we have all three, we can't get as much of avoidance and mitigation as dks and druids. During Shield Block uptime block becomes the real mitigation, and pretty good one too, but are those moments worth gearing up for?

  13. #13
    sunder armor is good for the raid!

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Hengist View Post
    That's my problem - I feel like our ability to block some damage takes out more of our "tank points" than it is worth. We have block, armor and avoidance, but as you calculated, only the last two really matter, but since we have all three, we can't get as much of avoidance and mitigation as dks and druids. During Shield Block uptime block becomes the real mitigation, and pretty good one too, but are those moments worth gearing up for?
    BlockValue is great, cause not only are you reducing dmg, but increasing dps/tps as well though shield slams. It's the "block rating" that's useless for warriors. Don't mix those two up

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garbid View Post
    BlockValue is great, cause not only are you reducing dmg, but increasing dps/tps as well though shield slams. It's the "block rating" that's useless for warriors. Don't mix those two up
    Before going for sbv for threat, I'll go with expertise and hit caps. Before going for sbv for survival, I'll go for amor, dodge, defense and parry. I can't see sbv being worth to invest into with its only significant effect being 10 seconds out of each 40 and higher shield slam, unless I'll be good with all the mentioned above, and that is not very likely to happen, when comparing two items of teh same ilvl, the one with hit/exp/dodge/parry/def/armor will be chosen over those with sbv/br, unless the item with sbv will be itemized better in general.

    I am not mixing br and sbv, I just don't find it worth it to bother even with block value when its useful only during Shield Block uptime or for solo/trash/heroic sets. I want block to become meaningful on bossfights, or instead ignored by devs when balancing the stats that matter between tanks. I feel like ability to block is pulling warrior and paladin tanks down on anything taht hits hard. I think our classes should be compensated somehow for indirect nerf of our mitigation that happened with crushing blows removal.

  16. #16
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    Where is there a fight that a warrior can't tank? There isn't one.

    Sure there are some fights where block isn't as useful, and that's where you change out some of you BR/SBV gear for avoidance instead.

    These type of threads are very annoying. Yes, there are differences between the tank classes, but if they can all do the same job then what difference does it really make? Variations between the classes is good for the game because it accommodates different play styles.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hroth View Post
    Where is there a fight that a warrior can't tank? There isn't one.
    I hope you understand that this is the kind of logic a dpser doing 800 dps could use - as long as there is no enrage, I can be as bad dps as possible.

    The fact that content is now very easy doesn't mean that all tanks are equal. You would rather have bad or good tank during progress when it really matters?
    Sure there are some fights where block isn't as useful, and that's where you change out some of you BR/SBV gear for avoidance instead.
    If that will eman "all fights whenre tank cna die during progress", it means that we're balanced around the trash stats and trash mitigation. That is something I do not like.
    These type of threads are very annoying. Yes, there are differences between the tank classes, but if they can all do the same job then what difference does it really make? Variations between the classes is good for the game because it accommodates different play styles.
    I'm not sure if you understand - differences and variations are all fine, when they dont affect the quality. If you have one dpsers doing small pink lazerz and another one doing big green lazers, but both being at 4k dps more or less, you willw ant tehm both and you'll be happy. But if green lazers will do 4k dps and pink 2,5k dps, on the fight with meaningful enrage, you will prefer 2 x green and not green + pink. Because they are not doing the same job anymore. I also wasn't doing the same job as our DK tank offtanking Patchwerk, while he could do the same job as me main tanking him. That is not "variation" anymore, but one tank being clearly superior over the other one. I could just ignore it, and consider it a niche in which some tanks are better than other, but taking heavy melee hits and being healed isn't a niche, its one of the most basic things. if there will be heavy melee hitting boss in Ulduar, I don't want to be worst choice for him just by design.

  18. #18
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    Mmm... could it be that gearing for 25s and gearing for 10s are different? As in, yes, the content is tuned to the appropriate number of people, but the smaller hits make certain stats (aka, SBR and SBV) scale better than in 25s? I mean, it's possible to throw 15-20k hits in a 25man, but virtually impossible to do that in 10man and still expect healers to pull through.

    SBV, SBR, and the oft-forgotten Critical Block make the average hit size very significant when discussing the value of these stats. So warrior vs paladin vs DK/Druid comparisons would shift depending on whether we're talking about 10mans or 25mans.
    "I played hard to avoid mistakes, but now I can play hard to capitalize on opportunities." -Arold, on the 3.0 Protection Warrior.

  19. #19
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    From experience I don't see the large disparity between a DK and Warrior. I am sure one might feel like it is there when they don't do as well as they would like, so it is easy to feel like one class is just that much better than your own, but I think it really depends on a lot of factors. DK's are not defacto standard that much better, even for Patchwerk. Shoot, for us, we found that warriors/paladins ended up making better offtanks for patchwerk than our DK did. We simply took less damage overall and ours was certainly less spikey. A lot of it has to do with gear/skill/etc.

    I find block itself to be a good stat. Even rating is good if you aren't block capped yet. Yes, for a warrior it is typically less reliable because you can no longer guarantee a block, but it isn't like block stops working the moment shield block is down. There aren't simply two extremes where on one side shield block is up and you are blocking attacks and on the other side shield block is down and you no longer block. You still should be blocking 20-30% of the time, which while not as good as avoidance, is still decent mitigation. I am not sure I would gear for it specifically (maybe an experienced warrior can comment on that), but I definitely wouldn't discount it as nothing. All of our forms of mitigation (and avoidance) work together to keep us alive as a whole. Just because a contribution is small doesn't mean it is meaningless.

    If I had to guess, I would guess that warriors are balanced around the fact that they don't block all the time and that it is random when shield block is down. Of course none of us are blizzard devs, so that would be only a guess for any of us.

    EDIT: As a note, I noticed the OP was gemming for hit/expertise. Those are definitely important threat stats, but if you are having trouble with survivability, then you might consider gemming for avoidance instead until you feel comfortable going back to hit/expertise.

  20. #20
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    I don't sneeze at block. but I don't actively seek it to the point of obsession. Ive seen people pass up Crusader's Square Pauldrons for the Tundra Pauldrons just for the block - imo, dumb idea.
    It's always easier to just be nice.

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